7 years ago

Volume 6 Issue 7 - April 2001

  • Text
  • April
  • Toronto
  • Theatre
  • Choir
  • Arts
  • Bloor
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  • Wholenote
  • Choral

engaging "Encounters in

engaging "Encounters in New· Music" series, pairing James Macmillan and Canadian come poser James Rolfe (composer of the opera Beatrice Chancey) for an evening of new music at the Glenn.Gould Studio. Macmillan's strongly-held religious beliefs are often the basis of his works, as is the case with Raising Sparks (1997), a song cycle on creation and redemption. Raising SparkS explores the. concepts of Zimzum - the holding back of God's power and light to make space for something other than Himself, and Shevira - the sma~hing of the clay vessels intended to capture the intense -light of God's creation. Also included are Macmillan's A Cec(lian Variation for J.F.K (1991), based on the overture to . Purcell's 1683 St. Cecilia Ode 'Welcome to all the pleasures", and "Three Dawn Rituals" (1983), a 9-minute octet using Javanese modes. "Three Dawn Rituals" was influenced by the cenfral portion of Kenneth Grahame's book "The Wind in the Willows", in which animals encounter the god Pan and pay homage to him. Decidedly .more secular in nature; the music of James Rolfe deals less with the surfaces of various musics than with their mechanics, maintaining abstraction within his organized, sometimes deconstructive approach to dealing with· other Western classical and popular m\i\ic. Rolfe's work is less a bewildering potpourri of references than it is elegantly woven hints and whispers drawing the ear to processes beneath the surface of the music. "Squeeze," for chamber ensemble; is march music, traversing the J. S. Bach chorale "Jesus meine zuversicht." - back and f9rth, in tight and 1 furious formation. "Lilacs," commissioned for solo piano by Eve Egoyan, is "a kind of Program Music fn;>m an unknown galaxy somewhere in the 19th century." "6 Songs;" on poems by Walt Whitman, was specially commissioned by Soundstreams Canada for this concert, and will be performed by soprano Measha Briiggergosman under the •!• CONCERT NOTES •!• CHORAL SCENE James Rolfe direction of Gary Kulesha. Also performing on the 17th will be mezzo-soprano Anita Krause, pianists Eve Egoyan and Stephen Clarke. The last spirit I mention this month is that of composer Michael J. Baker. It is almost impossible not to experience the essence of an artist through his or her creations - it bursts through .in our work, alive in the air that moves the. sound. I'm sure the audience and his friends will delight in this sensation during the tribute concert of his work for dance on April 7, at 8 pm, St. John's Church, 288 Humberside Avenue. DIVERSITY In nature,· we know that species diversity is correlated with the stability of an ecosystem (i.e. resilience and resistance), and wjth this in mind I'd like to point out a few other concerts of note. On April 18, the Toronto Symphony will premiere Jeff Ryan's "Violet Crumble", and on the 28th, New Music Concerts presents another portrait concert . at the CBC's Glenn Gould Studio, this time of composer Isabelle Panneton. The concert takes place at 8 pm, and the composer will be presenJ for an illuminating introduction at 7: 15. BIOMUSICS. In Kitchener, what may be the most diverse new music festival in the country will be taking place May 2-6. Under Artistic Director Peter Hatch, Open Ears ( openears) has quietly emerged as an energetic and adventurous collection of concerts and disparate new music events, this year being no exception. Those . who make the short jaunt to Kitchener will hear music installation pieces, outdoor concerts, performances from .the Uri Caine Ensemble, NUMUS, turntabllst . Martin Tetrault and percussionist Michel F. Cote, and pieces by composers Jose Evangelista, Martin.Gotfrit, Chris Norman, Peter Hatch,. Heather Schmidt (premiere), R. Murray Schafer, Harry Freedman (World Pree miere), Steve Reich, John Rea, Micheline Coulombe St-Marcoux, Paul Steenhuisen, Claude Vivier, and Juliet Palmer (world pre- . mi~re dance/multimedia work with choreographer Bill James). Electroacousticians Barry Truax, Hildegard Westerkamp, Peter MaJ111ing, Damian ~eller, Hans Peter Stubbe,· and Darren Copeland will transport you to Copenhagen, India, Stockholm, and elsewhere as they perform their octaphonic works in the City Hall Rotunda, and special guest Henry-Kaiser will perform with Michael Snow, John Oswald and Paul Dutton, in "Late Night on the Edge" concerts at The Registry Theatre, 122 Frederick St. in a less formal setting, as will live electronics performers Peter Hannan and Hemy Kucharzyk, accordionist Douglas Schmidt and live electronics performer/mixmaster Giorgio Magnanensi. Open Ears is a · must for both experts and those interested in hearing engaging new music. Isabelle Panneton by Jim Galloway When April Shows Come Your Way Spring is sprung, the grass is riz, I wonder where the boidies is. The boidies is upon the wing. But that's absoid! I always thought the wing was ~n the boid! Well, Spring has indeed sprung. Young men's fancies turn to where young ladies' fancies have been all the time: When birds do sing, hey ding a ding, ding and drummers go ring a ding ding. Well, let's beat the drum for some of the musical treats coming your way this April. WILL THE BIG BANDS EVER COME BACK DEPARTMENT One of the highlights this month is the appearance at the Top O' The Senator. of the Rob McConnell Tentet and around this we have an interesting scenario. Think of a big band, as good as anything you can find in the business. Years of energy and hard work go into making this · creation a finely tuned, sleek Rolls Royce of the music business, lauded by fans and critics. It and its leader win awards - Grammies and Junos galore. Result? There are not enough engagements around to make it feasible to keep the band together. Sure, it can make occasional appearances at special events and festivals, but there is · sirriply no way of keeping the , New Music surfers, take note: now you can cut to the chase. Get comprehensive newmusic-only concert listings onl'ine at 14 Wholenote APRIL 1, 200 1 - M AY 7, 2001

APRIL 1, 2001 - MAY 7, 2001 Wholenote 15

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